HC Deb 21 May 1946 vol 423 cc194-5
59. Mr. William Teeling

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that a number of firms are advertising in the newspapers goods which they cannot at present deliver; that this is clone in order to avoid taxation; and that, in view of the paper shortage, new and smaller firms who are just beginning their businesses, are unable to obtain space to advertise goods they can sell; and whether he proposes to take action in this matter.

Mr. Dalton

Reasonable expenditure on advertising is admissible as a deduction for taxation purposes arid it is not, in my view, unreasonable for a trader to advertise goods in advance of their being ready for the market

Mr. Teeling

Does the right hon. Gentleman not realise that a large number of people just out of the Services who have started businesses with their gratuities, are unable at present to advertise in the papers because there is no space, and if he does not feel that he can do anything with regard to the bigger firms could he not do something to help obtain more newsprint from abroad?

Mr. Dalton

The total quantity of newsprint is a different matter and there, of course, we are in the field of foreign exchange problems. With regard to advertising in advance, the people of whom the hon. Gentleman speaks might gain equally from being able to advertise a little in advance the goods which, before long, they will be able to put on the market.

Wing-Commander Hulbert

Is it not a fact that the reason these goods cannot be delivered is because of the policy of His Majesty's Government?

Mr. Mikardo

Is not the position as described in the Question due to unregulated private enterprise?

Mr. Gallacher

Would not the Chancellor recommend the Government to take over these firms and stop all these rackets?

Mr. C. S. Taylor

In order to maintain the good will which has been built up over a number of years, is not this "reminder advertising" very necessary?